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"Fruiting Bodies" by Sam Chase, at Ma-Yi Theater Company in 2018. Pictured: Jeffrey Omura and Kimiye Corwin.

Ma-Yi Theater Company Announces 30th Anniversary Season

The slate includes a new musical by Jessica Hagedorn and Fabian Obispo and a return to Kristine Haruna Lee’s ‘Suicide Forest.’

NEW YORK CITY: The Ma-Yi Theater Company, acclaimed for staging the works of Asian American writers, has announced its 2019-20 season, highlighting the world premiere musical Felix Starro and New York Times Critic’s Pick Suicide Forest.

“Thirty years is a long time, but in some ways a blip on the ongoing histories of Asian American theatremaking,” said Ma-Yi’s producing artistic director, Ralph B. Peña, in a statement. “This 30-year milestone is preceded by decades of struggles and activism, an ‘unbroken thread,’ as Roberta Uno puts it. When I look at the younger generations of Asian American artists today, I am excited about all the possibilities they hold.”

The season opens with the world premiere of Felix Starro (Aug. 23- Sept. 15), created by Jessica Hagedorn and Fabian Obispo, which is billed as the first musical created by Filipino Americans to premiere Off-Broadway. The powerful piece follows the struggles of a young undocumented immigrant in San Francisco and his famous faith-healer grandfather. Ralph B. Peña will direct at Theatre Row.

Playing next will be an encore engagement of Kristine Haruna Lee’s Suicide Forest (Feb. 25-March 22, 2020), directed by Aya Ogawa. This bilingual nightmare play exploring Japanese American identity will play at A.R.T./New York’s Mezzanine Theater.

Closing the 30th anniversary season will be a co-production with one of New York’s most celebrated theatre companies, to run April-May 2020. Details soon to be announced.

Ma-Yi Theater Company, founded in 1989, develops and produces new plays by Asian American writers.

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